- Paperback: 560 pages
- Publisher: Tor; Main Market edition (7 May 2004)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0330493159
- ISBN-13: 978-0330493154
- Product Dimensions: 11.1 x 3.5 x 17.8 cm
- Average Customer Review: 6 customer reviews
- Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 2,099,769 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
The Meq Paperback – 7 May 2004
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|Paperback, 7 May 2004||
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As the story progresses, Zianno and the other Meq characters are revealed by their thoughts and actions to be not quite human. Their lifespans stretch across many centuries, so they can afford to think long-term, also the actions of ancient enemies such as the Phoenicians are still fresh in their collective mind. However, they also curiously inconsistent, one minute acting with great urgency as they attempt unsuccessfully to track down the psychotic killer Fleur du Mal, the next embarking on a long dreamlike trek that may take years and not accomplish very much. Zianno and a companion start a search that takes them all over north Africa, and at one point he suddenly realises that six years have passed with no result!
The characters of the Meq are strangely insubstantial, and I would find it difficult to describe the personal attributes of Zianno, Sailor and the others. They tend to drift in and out of the story, and at times I lost track of who was present and who was missing. The Giza (human) characters, such as Solomon the Jewish trader, seemed to be much more vivid, on the whole. Occasionally historical figures such as Scott Joplin or T.S. Eliot appear in the narrative, but generally the Meq are caught up in their own quests and crises, and do not actively involve themselves much in the wider human realm. Even the First World War is but a remote event that takes place offstage in the world of the Giza.
Despite its dreamlike, ambling ways, I found the story quite interesting and look forward to reading the next book in the series. As the narrative approaches modern times, I am curious to find out how the Meq will retain their secrets in a world of passports, telephones and computers. Hopefully we will also see young Zianno Zezen developing a stronger and more distinctive personality!
A great book that refreshingly keeps you hooked. I couldn't put the book down for the week and a half it took me to read it. Can't wait for the second installment. Keep them coming.
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